Hometown: Upstate NY
Home country: USA
Current location: Houston Area TX
Member since: Mon Nov 10, 2003, 05:30 PM
Number of posts: 135,060
Hometown: Upstate NY
Home country: USA
Current location: Houston Area TX
Member since: Mon Nov 10, 2003, 05:30 PM
Number of posts: 135,060
We’re now a week into forcible rape-gate and the issue of Republican mullahs males totally alienating all female voters is in full swing. Rep. Akin really got the ball rolling when he very publicly articulated that the Republican establishment’s attitude toward rape is just slightly ahead of the Taliban but behind Saudi Arabia, but now it seems that the flood gates have been opened and the inane clown posse is serving all the bat shit with a side of pink slime it can to its ignorant base. Let’s face it, here: Republicans are to science and anatomy what bowling is to athletes.
The latest pretend human being and closet sociopath to weigh in on forcible rape-gate is Idaho Republican Chuck Winder. Much like every single Republican state rep, Winder is ignoring that boring recession thingy and devoting tax-payer dollars to implementing virulently anti-woman legislation. For example, Winder is the sponsor of his state’s “Double Ultrasound Bill,” which requires women to have an ultrasound before they can access any abortion services. Now this lovely Adonis is curious as to whether those silly gals even know what getting thrown to the ground and sexually violated means.
“Rape and incest was used as a reason to oppose this. I would hope that when a woman goes in to a physician with a rape issue, that physician will indeed ask her about perhaps her marriage, was this pregnancy caused by normal relations in a marriage or was it truly caused by a rape. I assume that’s part of the counseling that goes on.” (Veracity Stew)
Posted by maddezmom | Fri Aug 24, 2012, 07:52 AM (58 replies)
Posted: 08/23/2012 11:31 am
At the rate prominent Republicans are turning on Todd Akin this week, you'd think he actually said something to offend them.
When Akin told an interviewer that rape victims don't need abortion rights because victims of "legitimate rape" don't get pregnant, he wasn't going rogue. Instead, he was simply repeating the GOP's official position on reproductive rights in a really, really tasteless way. If Akin's example is any guide, straying from right-wing orthodoxy in today's Republican party is less of a crime than simply calling attention to it.
It's true that Akin's bizarre belief that rape victims have ways to "shut that whole thing down" is common only among the fringe of the fringe Right. But the anti-abortion orthodoxy that is now part of the official Republican platform is a direct result of that sort of magical thinking. It helps, when denying reproductive choice to all women, to imagine it only benefits a certain type of abortion-craving bogey-woman who brought this on herself. Sometimes that requires some helpful mythology and weird science to smooth over the reality of women's lives.
It's the reality of real people that Republican leaders are desperately trying to avoid. As soon as Akin's comments hit the national news,prominent Republicans starting calling for him to step out of the Senate race in Missouri. Par for the course, once it became clear that that was the thing to do, Mitt Romney eventually joined the onslaught.
Posted by maddezmom | Thu Aug 23, 2012, 05:59 PM (0 replies)
When Mitt Romney's campaign unveiled his team of foreign policy advisers, the political left unloaded.
The Nation magazine dubbed it "Romney's Neocon War Cabinet," noting firebreathing former UN ambassador John Bolton, columnist Robert Kagan and former Bush-Cheney official and neoconservative tutor Eliot Cohen. The take from left-leaning blog Daily Kos: "Knuckle-Dragging Ultrahawks Dominate Mitt Romney's Foreign Policy Team." And a web video by New Orleans music publisher Louie Ludwig -- "These Guys" -- ran through a rogue's gallery of former Bush-Cheney team members who, the video implies, brought us the Iraq War. "So what happened to these guys?" intones the Tony Soprano sound-alike narrator. "They work for this guy," a.k.a. Romney.
Even some Republicans voiced alarm about the roster. "...ome of them are quite far to the right," former Secretary of State Colin Powell said on Morning Joe. "And sometimes they might be in a position to make judgments or recommendations to the candidate that should get a second thought." Powell cited Romney's assertion in March that Russia was "our number one geopolitical foe." Retorted Powell, "Come on, Mitt, think. That's simply not the case."
So imagine the surprise two weeks ago when news broke that Robert Zoellick, the just-departed World Bank president, had been named to head Romney's national security transition team.
"Romney's Foreign Policy Mistake: A Big One," proclaimed Washington Post blogger Jennifer Rubin, whose Right Turn column channels neocon thinking. "For foreign policy hawks, Zoellick is an anathema," she said, describing him as one-time "right hand man in the State Department and Treasury Department of James A. Baker, who was infamous for his anti-Israel stance."
Posted by maddezmom | Thu Aug 23, 2012, 05:49 PM (0 replies)
GLAAD Takes On Anti-Gay Groups, Calls FRC ‘As Fringe As Fringe Gets’
by DAVID BADASH on AUGUST 23, 2012
New GLAAD president Herndon Graddick is calling the Family Research Council (FRC) “as fringe as fringe gets,” and is chastising NOM, the National Organization For Marriage, for fundraising on last week’s shooting at FRC headquarters. Graddick, who’s been with the Gay And Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation for several years and became its president in April, is spot-on when he writes in today’s Huffington Post that after the FRC shooting, while “more than 40 organizations that support LGBT equality condemned the incident and expressed our best wishes to the victim,” the “actions of anti-gay groups in the aftermath have been nothing short of reprehensible.”
In 2009, Tony Perkins called the man who murdered women’s health care provider (and frequent FRC punching bag) George Tiller a “vigilante” and said that we should all “look toward the end of all violence.”
But after the shooting last week, the rhetoric coming from people like Perkins is missing words like “vigilante.” Instead, Perkins and fellow anti-gay crusader Brian Brown from the National Organization for Marriage are trying to blame this inexcusable act of violence on groups like the Southern Poverty Law Center, which labeled FRC a “Hate Group” for its damaging misinformation campaigns against the LGBT community. Perkins wants people to think this designation comes solely from his groups’ positions on the issues.
Unfortunately this sentiment has been seeping out into the public consciousness. Washington Postcolumnist Dana Milbank referred to FRC as a “mainstream conservative think tank.”
Trouble is, I don’t know many mainstream organizations that characterize their opponents as being in league with Satan, as Perkins did (calling LGBT advocates “pawns of the enemy”) in April of last year at the Oak Initiative Summit.
Posted by maddezmom | Thu Aug 23, 2012, 04:02 PM (0 replies)
By Annie-Rose Strasser on Aug 23, 2012 at 4:09 pm
On the campaign trail today, Mitt Romney refused to grant interviews to any reporters who wanted to know about his position on abortion, or about Rep. Todd Akin (R-MO), the Senate candidate whose “legitimate rape” comments sparked outrage over the weekend from Democrats and Republicans alike.
One CBS correspondent explained that only four local reporters got to talk to Romney because of his conditions. “The one stipulation to the interview,” she explained, “was that I not ask him about abortion, or Todd Akin”:
This move signals Romney’s ongoing commitment to dodge any press that might be unflattering, even after his commitment a few weeks ago to be more open to press appearances.
Posted by maddezmom | Thu Aug 23, 2012, 03:14 PM (12 replies)
The Bain Files: Inside Mitt Romney’s Tax-Dodging Cayman Schemes
Mitt Romney's $250 million fortune is largely a black hole: Aside from the meager and vague disclosures he has filed under federal and Massachusetts laws, and the two years of partial tax returns (one filed and another provisional) he has released, there is almost no data on precisely what his vast holdings consist of, or what vehicles he has used to escape taxes on his income. Gawker has obtained a massive cache of confidential financial documents that shed a great deal of light on those finances, and on the tax-dodging tricks available to the hyper-rich that he has used to keep his effective tax rate at roughly 13% over the last decade.
Today, we are publishing more than 950 pages of internal audits, financial statements, and private investor letters for 21 cryptically named entities in which Romney had invested—at minimum—more than $10 million as of 2011 (that number is based on the low end of ranges he has disclosed—the true number is almost certainly significantly higher). Almost all of them are affiliated with Bain Capital, the secretive private equity firm Romney co-founded in 1984 and ran until his departure in 1999 (or 2002, depending on whom you ask). Many of them are offshore funds based in the Cayman Islands. Together, they reveal the mind-numbing, maze-like, and deeply opaque complexity with which Romney has handled his wealth, the exotic tax-avoidance schemes available only to the preposterously wealthy that benefit him, the unlikely (for a right-wing religious Mormon) places that his money has ended up, and the deeply hypocritical distance between his own criticisms of Obama's fiscal approach and his money managers' embrace of those same policies. They also show that some of the investments that Romney has always described as part of his retirement package at Bain weren't made until years after he left the company.
Bain isn't a company so much as an intricate suite of steadily proliferating inter-related holding companies and limited partnerships, some based in Delaware and others in the Cayman Islands, Luxembourg, and elsewhere, designed to collectively house roughly $66 billion in wealth in its many crevices and chambers. When Romney left in 1999, he and his wife retained significant investments in many of those Bain vehicles—he claims they are "passive investments" and that they are managed in a blind trust (though the trustee isn't blind enough to meet federal standards of independence). But aside from disparate snippets of information contained in his federal and Massachusetts financial disclosure forms, his 2010 tax returns, and SEC filings, the nature of those investments has been obfuscated by design.
When he disclosed his finances to the U.S. Office of Government Ethics in 2007, Romney took care to publish the underlying holdings of many funds he invested with—after disclosing his $1 million-plus stake in "GS 2002 Exchange Place Fund LP," for instance, he listed six pages of individual equities the fund held, from Panera Bread Co. to Tribune Co. But when it came to the Bain investments, he simply listed the value of his investments in odd-sounding entities like "Sankaty High Yield Partners II LP" with no indication of what was inside. In an accompanying note, he claimed that he had tried and failed to get the information: "The filer has requested information about the underlying holdings of these funds and values and income amounts for these underlying holdings. However, the fund managers have informed the filer in writing that this information is confidential and proprietary, and has declined to provide such information.
Posted by maddezmom | Thu Aug 23, 2012, 12:44 PM (0 replies)
The Bain Files: The Documents
Gawker has obtained a large cache of confidential internal financial documents from more than 20 secretive hedge funds and other investment vehicles in which Mitt Romney has stashed his considerable wealth. All told, the partnerships and limited liability corporations detailed below accounted for, at minimum, $10,069,000 of Romney's assets in 2011 and yielded $913,300 in income, according to his 2012 financial disclosure (those figures are derived from adding up the low end of ranges Romney disclosed; the actual numbers could be astronomically higher).
Most of the entities are affiliated in one way or another with Bain Capital, the private equity firm Romney ran from 1984 through 1999. According to his financial disclosures, the investments "were made pursuant to an agreement with Bain Capital regarding Romney's retirement.... The agreement has expired but retain certain investments...made prior to the expiration of the agreement." In other words, they are his retirement package from more than a decade ago, and continue to make him nearly a million (at minimum) dollars per year.
For a look at what we've been able to glean thus far from the documents—including Romney's unlikely relationship with the National Enquirer and how his money managers praised the economic stimulus he publicly derided—go here. But by all means peruse the documents yourself and lend your expertise to what they mean in the discussion.
All of the documents linked below are also available in a searchable format here, at Document Cloud.
Posted by maddezmom | Thu Aug 23, 2012, 12:07 PM (2 replies)
In a wide-ranging interview with Time Magazine, Mitt Romney declined to say which deductions he would eliminate from the tax code in order to make his plan to cut tax rates across the board revenue-neutral.
"I know our Democrat friends would love to have me specify one or two so they could amass the special interest to fight that effort," Romney told managing editor Richard Stengel when asked to specify which deductions he would eliminate. He then launched into a general discussion about ways to limit deductions, saying the choice would be made "in consultation with Congress" -- in other words, after the election.
He added that he would maintain the mortgage-interest deduction, health care and charitable contribution deductions, the first two of which are the most expensive. All three deductions are popular.
Romney has been specific about which deductions he would limit -- in private. In April, he told donors that he would probably eliminate the second-home mortgage interest deduction and limit state and local property tax deductions for high-income earners, according to NBC News.
Posted by maddezmom | Thu Aug 23, 2012, 09:07 AM (6 replies)
Anti-abortion activists are incensed at the candidate’s claim that he wouldn’t ban abortion for victims of rape—and at his rejection of Todd Akin, who’s trying to capitalize on that anger with a fundraising push.
Jennifer Mason, the communications director of Personhood USA and wife of the group’s co-founder, Keith Mason, is very disappointed with the way Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan have responded to the Todd Akin flap. She’s particularly incensed by the campaign’s insistence that a Romney-Ryan administration wouldn’t try to ban abortion for rape victims. “Romney and Ryan have turned their backs on the Republican Party platform in cases of rape,” she says. “That’s a huge problem.”
Even since Akin introduced the phrase “legitimate rape” into the political lexicon, Republican leaders have been scrambling to distance themselves from him. Romney called on him to drop out of the race, and both the National Republican Senatorial Committee and American Crossroads, Karl Rove’s super PAC, have said they won’t support him financially. But the rush to reject Akin is infuriating the anti-abortion movement, which sees it as a further sign of Romney’s weak commitment to social conservatism. “For goodness’s sake, the guy won’t defend a chicken sandwich, let alone his own Senate candidate,” says conservative radio host Steve Deace, who recently co-wrote a book, We Won’t Get Fooled Again: Where the Christian Right Went Wrong and How to Make America Right Again, arguing that social conservatives have been shafted by the GOP.
Akin is hoping he can capitalize on grassroots anger with Republican leadership. On Wednesday, an appeal on his fundraising page for his Missouri Senate bid said: “Join us as we fight back against the party bosses. Help us raise $24,000 in 24 hours!” By late afternoon, he’d exceeded that by several thousand dollars. A few minutes later, the site set a new goal—$100,000 by midnight. On Thursday morning, Akin announced they'd they'd beat it, with thousands of people donating.
Posted by maddezmom | Thu Aug 23, 2012, 08:53 AM (2 replies)
Lubbock County judge: Tax hike needed to fund civil war against Obama
Posted on 22 Aug 2012 at 11:39am
And you thought Todd Akin was crazy …
Lubbock County Judge Tom Head, a Republican who chairs the county’s Commissioners Court, says the county needs to increase its property tax rate by 1.7 cents in the next fiscal year — partly so the sheriff’s department is prepared to battle the U.N. troops who will undoubtedly invade the county if President Barack Obama is re-elected. From Fox 34 in Lubbock:
Head said he and the county must be prepared for many contingencies, one that he particularly fears, is if President Obama is reelected.
“He’s going to try to hand over the sovereignty of the United States to the UN, and what is going to happen when that happens?,” Head asked.
“I’m thinking the worst. Civil unrest, civil disobedience, civil war maybe. And we’re not just talking a few riots here and demonstrations, we’re talking Lexington, Concord, take up arms and get rid of the guy.
“Now what’s going to happen if we do that, if the public decides to do that? He’s going to send in U.N. troops. I don’t want ‘em in Lubbock County. OK. So I’m going to stand in front of their armored personnel carrier and say ‘you’re not coming in here’.
Posted by maddezmom | Wed Aug 22, 2012, 12:15 PM (49 replies)